Vegetables for dessert? Sure, why not.

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Happy 2018! I hope your new year got off to a good start – mine certainly did, absolutely no complaints over here!

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I’ve always been intrigued by the idea of using a squash other than pumpkin in a dessert.

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Don’t be deceived by the cute little dumpling squash hanging out in these pictures – what really went in here is kabocha, one of these guys:

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I like the kabocha here – if you’ve never encountered one, they’re a bit of a cross between pumpkin and butternut squash. I really like it for the earthiness it brings here, which plays nicely against the apples.

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Besides, this is my absolute favorite crisp topping – it has a little extra protein from greek yogurt and almond flour, and is just so fun to eat. It stays crispy even after hanging out in the fridge overnight, which makes this excellent breakfast (see exhibit A).

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I also love it for dessert with ice cream (obviously) – the crisp ends up covered in melty ice cream, making it into slightly indulgent granola/muesli.

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In other news, I’ve been museuming and drawing again, which feels great. I let it lag a little too long I think!

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Of course coffee.

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Here’s hoping you’re enjoying the beginning of the new year! I have good feelings for this one. If you’re in the mood for a lightly sweet, perfectly healthy desserty-breakfast, I’ve got you covered! Happy baking :)

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Kabocha Squash and Apple Walnut Crisp

Gluten free, refined sugar free, and whole grain. Full of healthy fats AND fruits & veggies! Feel free to eat this as breakfast, I certainly did. Adapted from the Raz-Apple crisp I made around Thanksgiving, here. Yield: 1 2-quart baking dish (it’s about 8 by 8 and deep). Serves: 2 for dessert & then breakfast! Or… you know, a normal amount of people.

For the filling:

2-3 largish Granny Smith apples, cored and sliced into thin wedges*
1 small kabocha squash, peeled & cubed*
1/4 cup maple syrup
1/4 c port**
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 teaspoons arrowroot starch
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
¼ teaspoon ground allspice

*I just approximate as I slice; I use however many it takes to fill my 2 quart, 8×8 baking dish; for ease of cutting kabocha squash, I recommend slicing it in half, then in wedges and using a knife to carefully peel it. The peel is totally edible, but I didn’t want its texture in the crisp. You’ll still get an arm workout peeling these babies, believe me!

**the port is optional but amazing; if you don’t use it, use 1/4c water instead

For the crisp:

1 cup old-fashioned oats (use certified gluten-free oats for a gluten-free crisp)
½ cup firmly packed almond flour
½ cup chopped walnuts
1/4 c unsweetened shredded coconut
2 tbsp maple sugar
¼ teaspoon fine sea salt
2 tsp vanilla extract
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
¼ cup plain whole milk Greek yogurt

Preheat the oven to 350.
In a veggie steamer (I use a metal steamer inside a pot), steam the kabocha squash for 10-15 minutes, until just barely fork tender.

Slice apples into a deep baking dish, and add steamed kabocha squash (my dish is 8×8, 2 qt capacity; 9″ square or 9″ deep pie dish would also be fine). In a liquid measuring cup, whisk together the maple and water/port until combined. Add the lemon juice, arrowroot, cinnamon and allspice, and whisk to combine. Pour the mixture over the squash and apples and toss to combine. Bake for 15 minutes.

While the filling is baking, make the crisp. In a mixing bowl, stir together the oats, almond meal, walnuts, shredded coconut, maple sugar and salt. Mix in the vanilla, melted butter and the yogurt. Stir until everything is mixed thoroughly.

Once the filling has baked for 15 minutes, stir to redistribute it evenly in the dish. Plop spoonfuls of the crisp topping evenly over the filling – no need to pack it down. Return the dish to the oven and bake for 25 to 30 more minutes, until the filling is bubbling around the edges and the top is golden.

Let the crisp rest at least 5 to 10 minutes before serving; or do like I did and make it earlier in the day, and have it later. Serve with vanilla ice cream, obviously! Keep leftovers, covered, in the fridge for about three days (yeah right. It would take some kind of major feat to make it last that long; ours was gone in just over 1!) Serve cold alongside breakfast because it’s extra awesome that way.

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Walking in a mint-ery wonderland

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Happy holidays!

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As much as certain elements of this time of year drive me bananas (having to throw elbows in the grocery store to retrieve the last piece of whatever, extra lines everywhere, no parking, where do all these extra people come from?!), I do undeniably love the run-up to the holidays.

Everything looks festive, even traffic light reflections in wet pavement. And of course I love the excuse to have a tiny conifer in my living room.

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Let’s not overlook holiday baking! Heaven forbid.

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Fun fact! This is actually a giant panna cotta tart. It didn’t really occur to me while I was making it – I was just thinking, la la la cream tart la la but then I got curious and did some googling. I had forgotten that cream stabilized with gelatin is technically panna cotta… so, there ya go! Panna cotta tart, if that’s even a thing.

This one is even grain and gluten free! I suppose you could make this with coconut milk to make it dairy free, but I haven’t tried that yet (next time!) – partially because I have a massive weakness for cream.

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Heavy cream reminds me of being a kid and pouring a bit over my cereal – my grandmother used to do this, and after my dad told me that, I always lurked around waiting for leftover cream to appear the fridge. As I recall, my favorite combination was a giant bowl of honey nut cheerios with about 3/4 milk and 1/4 cream.

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Now I’ve leveled up and adult-ed my cream: it gets baked into cream biscuits, set into a panna cotta tart, or poured into my coffee (omg heaven).

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I love this dessert though: it looks like a mini winter wonderland! Walking in a mint-er wonderland? Ha. And it’s delicious. It actually took a minute to grow on me, but then I couldn’t get enough. Minty, chocolatey & slightly tart from the yogurt-cream panna cotta, it’s a perfect holiday dessert when something light is called for. I couldn’t resist the pomegranate, both for flavor and texture, but also for color. They are always so pretty!

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Happy holidays! Share this with loved ones, since it’s so much better enjoyed in good company :)

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Mint Cream Tart on a Dark Chocolate Coconut Crust

Grain free, gluten free, refined sugar free! A perfect wintery dessert, especially since it even *looks* festive. You can even make the whole thing the night before, since gelatin-based things like to hang out in the fridge for awhile. Lightly minty, slightly tart from the yogurt, balanced nicely by dark chocolate. Who doesn’t love mint and chocolate?! This is really a giant panna cotta in a crust, if we want to get technical. Mint cream adapted from Martha Stewart, here; the rest is my brainchild. Yield: 1 9″ tart, serves… two ;) Kidding! 2-8, realistically.

For the crust:

1.75 c almond flour
1/3 c unsweetened cacao powder
1/4 c unsweetened shredded coconut
heaping 1/4 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 tbsp pure maple syrup
3.5 tbsp coconut oil, melted

Preheat the oven to 350, and lightly grease a 9″, deep pie plate with coconut oil. Alternatively, you could use a tart ring with a removable bottom – I needed to transport mine so opted for just keeping it in a less fussy dish.

In a large bowl, stir together almond flour, cacao powder, coconut, sea salt, and baking soda. Add in vanilla, maple, and melted coconut oil and stir until completely combined. The dough will look crumbly, but you’ll be able to press it together with your fingers.

Press the crust into the plate and up the sides with a spoon or your fingers, creating a smooth edge (or not, your call!). Poke the bottom with a fork a few times, and bake for 17 minutes.

For the filling:

2 cups heavy cream
1/4 cup maple sugar*
6 stems peppermint or spearmint, plus more for garnish
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 tsp peppermint extract
1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
1/3 c dark chocolate, melted
1 tablespoon unflavored gelatin (one envelope)
1/2 cup cold water
1/2 cup whole milk greek yogurt, plain
pomegranate arils

*I use maple sugar here because it’s lighter in color than coconut or maple syrup, and I wanted to preserve the lightness of the cream filling. But any granulated sweetener would be fine, just keep in mind the filling color may darken.

Make the filling: Bring cream, sugar, mint, and salt to a simmer in a medium saucepan. Remove from heat, and let cool completely, about 30 minutes.

In a double boiler or in the microwave, heat the 1/3c dark chocolate until completely melted. I am lazy and use the microwave method: 30 second intervals, and stir in between until everything is melty. If you’re using a double boiler, stir continuously until the chocolate is melted.

With a pastry brush (or a spoon, totally fine – this is what I used), coat the bottom the crust with an even layer of melted chocolate. Refrigerate (or leave on the counter in your freezing apartment) until chocolate sets, about 10 minutes.

Sprinkle gelatin over water in a small bowl. Let stand until softened. Remove mint from cream mixture, and bring cream mixture to a simmer. Whisk in softened gelatin until it dissolves. Remove from heat, and stir in the yogurt. Pour filling into the prepared crust (if there’s leftover, pour it into a ramekin or two & save for later!) Carefully transfer to the refrigerator. Chill, uncovered, until set, at least 4 hours (or overnight). Garnish with mint stems, pomegranates, and sliced almonds if you’re feeling fancy. Slice and serve!

Chocolate dipped mint leaves are easy too: wash and pat dry nice-looking mint leaves, and dip in melted chocolate. Lay on a parchment lined baking sheet, and freeze until needed.

Keep leftovers covered in the fridge for a day or two.

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Breakfast disguised as dessert

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Ahh, the post-thanksgiving stupor….

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Just kidding! No such thing. First thing Friday morning was jazzercise, of course; I hate sitting still for too long. Thanksgiving itself was full of family and laughter & lots of croquet (ha!) – and of course, food. I was asked to bring the cornmeal apple & ginger cake that I made a few weeks ago; I made it with fresh ginger this time instead of crystallized, and I’m happy to report it’s amazing both ways.

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But for the days after Thanksgiving, a fruit-heavy, non-pie dessert was definitely required.

Perfect mornings look like this:

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Plus, I discovred a glut of late-season raspberries at the market a while back and pounced on them, knowing I’d want to pair them with apples strictly so I could go around saying RAZAPPLE! Ha.

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This crisp bakes up so well, you find yourselves eating bits of the crisp topping with your fingers.. not that we did that or anything…

It makes a stellar addition to breakfast alongside – what else? eggs and kale! – and I could argue that it’s even better the next day. We both liked that the apples retain their integrity – they don’t become a pile of mush, but they’re not crispy either – they’re somewhere in between & are absolutely delicious. This is one of my favorite things that I’ve made lately – simple, delicious, and seasonal. Happy baking!

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Raz-Apple Walnut Crisp

Gluten free & refined sugar free, with an easy dairy free/vegan option. Full of healthy fats and whole grains. Perfect for fall when there’s a glut of late summer berries at the market but apples are starting to be in season… for that matter, frozen raspberries work just fine too. Lightly sweet, tart and perfect for dessert and breakfast. Adapted from Cookie and Kate, here! Yield: 1 8×8 deep pan, serves 2 w/ leftovers for 1, haha…. kidding, only not really! Serves more like 6 normal humans.

  • For dairy free/vegan, sub coconut oil for the butter & non-dairy (coconut would be good!) yogurt for the dairy yogurt; bake as directed

For the filling:

5 largish (or 7 small) Granny Smith apples, cored and sliced into thin wedges*
2 c raspberries (frozen is fine)
scant ⅓ cup maple syrup
1/8 c port**
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 teaspoons arrowroot starch
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
¼ teaspoon ground allspice

*I just approximate as I slice; I use however many it takes to fill my 2 quart, 8×8 baking dish

**the port is optional but amazing; if you don’t use it, use 1/8c water instead

For the crisp:

1 cup old-fashioned oats (use certified gluten-free oats for a gluten-free crisp)
½ cup firmly packed almond flour
½ cup chopped walnuts
1/4 c unsweetened shredded coconut
1/4 c maple sugar
¼ teaspoon fine sea salt
2 tsp vanilla extract
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
¼ cup plain whole milk Greek yogurt

Preheat the oven to 350.
Slice apples into a deep baking dish, and add raspberries (my dish is 8×8, 2 qt capacity; 9″ square or 9″ deep pie dish would also be fine). In a liquid measuring cup, whisk together the maple and water/port until combined. Add the lemon juice, arrowroot, cinnamon and allspice, and whisk to combine. Pour the mixture over the apples and toss to combine. Bake for 20 minutes.

While the filling is baking, make the crisp. In a mixing bowl, stir together the oats, almond meal, walnuts, shredded coconut, maple sugar and salt. Mix in the vanilla, melted butter and the yogurt. Stir until everything is mixed thoroughly.

Once the filling has baked for 20 minutes, stir it to redistribute evenly in the dish. Plop spoonfuls of the crisp topping evenly over the filling – no need to pack it down. Return the dish to the oven and bake for 25 to 30 more minutes, until the filling is bubbling around the edges and the top is golden.

Let the crisp rest at least 5 to 10 minutes before serving; or do like I did and make it earlier in the day, and have it later. Serve with vanilla ice cream, obviously! Keep leftovers, covered, in the fridge for about five days (yeah right. It would take some kind of major feat to make it last that long; ours was gone in 2 days!) Serve cold alongside breakfast because it’s extra awesome that way.

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Cranberries – not just for sauce!

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Happy almost-Thanksgiving! Hard to believe it’s in less than a week. In keeping with the spirit of all things autumnal and holiday-ish, I bring you a cranberry curd tart! Perfect for dessert but also excellent for breakfast alongside eggs & kale.

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Besides, this color is amazing! Nature is really spectacular when you let her do her thing – no artificial coloring here, obviously!

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This tart is for those who love love love tart things! I really loved the crust – cornmeal and ginger are a match made in heaven.

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In other news, the leaves are gorgeous around here just now, and I move my plants around my apartment to follow the sun. They seem happy about it…

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I don’t think I have too much more for you today; it’s a mellow Sunday and I’m contentedly chill today.

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Enjoy your holiday week!

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Cranberry Curd Tart on a Cornmeal Ginger Crust

Tart, PINK and perfect for fall / holiday dessert. Gluten free, dairy free and refined sugar free – this is for those who like tart things! The cranberry curd ended up kind of like mousse – see note; if you’d like it sliceable like a proper tart, use a few extra eggs in the curd. The cornmeal ginger crust provides a naturally not-too-sweet complement to the tartness of the curd & puree. Yield: 1 9″ tart, serves 2 ;) kidding – serves 2-6! A Wait are Those Cookies original.

For the crust:

1.5 c almond flour
1/4 c unsweetened shredded coconut
1/2 c cornmeal
heaping 1/4 tsp sea salt
1 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp baking soda
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 tbsp pure maple syrup
5 tbsp coconut oil, melted

In a large bowl, stir together almond flour, shredded coconut, cornmeal, sea salt, ginger, and baking soda. Add in vanilla, maple, and melted coconut oil, and stir until completely combined. The dough will look crumbly, but you’ll be able to press it together with your fingers.
Preheat the oven to 350, and lightly grease a pie plate with coconut oil. Press the crust into the plate and up the sides with a spoon or your fingers, creating a smooth edge (or not, your call!). Poke the bottom with a fork a few times, and bake for 15 minutes. Remove and let cool for a few minutes, but leave the oven on.

For the cranberry curd*:

3 cups (12oz) cranberries, rinsed and picked over
1/2 c water
1/4 c maple
juice of 1 lemon
2 whole eggs
2 egg yolks
Pinch of salt
scant 1 tbsp vanilla
3.5 tbsp coconut oil

*mine was on the runnier side, making my tart more like mousse than a set curd tart. Suggest adding another couple of eggs – unless you’re okay with the mousse texture (it was totally fine taste-wise, just didn’t really hold its shape when sliced)

To make the cranberry curd, place the cranberries and water in a saucepan. Cook, covered, over medium-low heat, until you hear the the berries start to pop. Cook, stirring occasionally, until all the berries have burst. Cool slightly, then puree with an immersion or regular blender. Strain the mixture into a bowl or large liquid measuring cup, pushing on the solids to extract as much cranberry puree as possible. Yield is about 1.5 c of puree.

Beat the eggs, egg yolks, maple, and lemon juice together in the top of a double boiler. Whisking constantly, slowly pour in the warm cranberry puree. Add salt and vanilla. Whisk in coconut oil 1 tbsp at a time until melted. Cook over low heat, whisking constantly, until the mixture has thickened and coats the back of a spoon (about 15 minutes). Remove from the heat and let cool. The curd will thicken a little more as it cools – store in an airtight container in the fridge for a week, or freeze for later.

For the cranberry swirl:

Basically, you’re replicating the earlier part of the cranberry curd, prior to actually making curd with it. If you’re smart (unlike me, who decided to do this later), do it all at once, and reserve some of the cranberry puree.

1.5 c cranberries, rinsed & picked over
1/4 c water
2 tsp maple sugar
1 tsp vanilla

Combine cranberries and water and cook as directed above, for the curd, until the cranberries pop. Strain as before, pressing to extract the liquid. Stir in maple sugar and vanilla.

For assembly:

Bake the crust, as directed above (350 for 15, in case you don’t want to scroll back up). Remove and let cool for a few minutes, then pour in curd. Dollop the cranberry swirl in large dollops over the curd, then use a knife or toothpick to swirl everything together. Bake for 15-20 minutes to set the curd, then remove and let cool completely before serving. I prefer to refrigerate mine for at least half a day before serving to further set the curd. Serve with ice cream (obvs!) and extra cranberry puree. Store any leftovers in the fridge, covered.

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I only have (pies!) for you

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Could someone explain to me what happened to October? I blinked, and then… here we are. ALSO it’s already less than two weeks till Thanksgiving?! Um…. wat.

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But regardless… I have PIE!

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And it’s PURPLE pie!

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Because really, how could something like this not make you happy? That color just makes me smile every time. As does the fact that it’s grain & gluten free, dairy free, refined sugar free, vegan & paleo so errrybody can enjoy – because also, despite all the ‘free’ in its name, it is also delicious (NOT taste free. ha!)

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Maybe consider it if you’ve got friends or fam with some dietary stuff and they’re coming for Thanksgiving? I’m 100% sure they’d love you for it.

It’s been raining! I love love love the sound of rain – it so soothing, no matter what kind of day I’m having. Baking when it’s raining is one of my favorite things – I love that even though my apartment’s galley kitchen doesn’t have windows, I have a big window on the wall facing the entrance to the kitchen, which lets in light and rain sound. It’s perfect! Besides, my little one-butt kitchen is exactly the right size for my baking shenanigans.

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In other news, pretty coffee and some opera (shocking, I know…NOT).

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I’ve made this pie twice in three days – it’s that good! Full disclosure: the first time I made it, I took the first bite straight out of the pie dish: fork, meet pie. I NEVER do that, since I’m all about the presentation, but you know what? Sometimes it just has to happen.

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Happy Saturday! I’m loving the beautiful fall weather over here – the leaves are gorgeous, the air is crisp, and I had purple pie, eggs & kale for breakfast with the best company: life is wonderful! Happy baking!

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Purple Sweet Potato Pie on an Almond Coconut Crust

Gluten & grain free, refined sugar free, dairy free, vegan, paleo. Crust is a Wait are Those Cookies original, filling is adapted from The Endless Meal, here! Yield: one 9″ pie, serves 2 or several! ha.

For the crust:

  • 1.75 c almond flour
  • 1 c unsweetened shredded coconut
  • heaping 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp almond extract
  • 2 tbsp pure maple syrup
  • 4 tbsp coconut oil, melted

Preheat the oven to 350, and lightly grease a pie plate with coconut oil.

In a large bowl, stir together almond flour, shredded coconut, sea salt, and baking soda. Add in vanilla, almond extract, maple, and melted coconut oil, and stir until completely combined. The dough will look crumbly, but you’ll be able to press it together with your fingers. Press the crust into the plate and up the sides with a spoon or your fingers, creating a smooth edge (or not, your call!). Poke the bottom with a fork a few times, and bake for 15 minutes. Remove and let cool for a few minutes, but keep the oven on if you’re making the whole thing at once.

For the filling:

  • 2 large purple sweet potatoes, peeled & sliced into 1″ pieces (about 3 cups worth)
  • 3/4 c full fat coconut milk
  • heaping 1/4 c maple syrup
  • 1.5 tbsp tapioca starch*
  • juice of 1/2 a lemon (~1tbsp)
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp almond extract
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • heaping 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 3/4 teaspoon fine salt

*full disclosure: I made this twice in three days & totally forgot the tapioca starch the second time. It’s actually not essential – the filling set up fine without it.

While the crust is baking, make the filling!

In a medium saucepan, boil the sweet potato slices until fork tender. Drain and let cool for a few minutes. Add them to a food processor (or high powered blender) and pulse a few times to puree. Add in coconut milk, maple, tapioca, lemon juice, vanilla, and almond extract, and pulse to combine. Add cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and sea salt, and pulse until combined. The filling should be thick! Pour/spoon/spatula it into the prepared crust, smooth the top (or not, you do you!), and bake at 350 for about 45 minutes – the crust should be golden brown and the pie should be set, but with just the slightest bit of jiggle in the middle. Remove and let cool completely before serving (preferably with ice cream or whipped cream of choice, either dairy or non dairy). I prefer to make this earlier in the day and refrigerate until serving, to give the filling ample time to set up.

Top with crystalized ginger & extra coconut if desired!

Keep leftovers covered in the fridge – it will last for a few days, provided all of it doesn’t get eaten first!

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Eat, drink, and be even MORE rosemary!

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Despite the name of this blog, it’s been awhile since I’ve posted a cookie recipe on here – it’s high time I think.

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Additionally, I should note – the light was not playing nice with me the several times I photographed these little guys so apologies for the inconsistencies in the photos! (I am nitpicky about this kind of thing and therefore have to point it out… just in case you might have overlooked it. Ha!)

These are probably my most frequently made cookies – not even probably, they ARE my most frequently made cookies, so they really should be on here!

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They’re so easy to put together – the flour is really adaptable & I’ve never had a bad batch, even with many substitutions. This is my favorite version of the recipe though; as I said a few posts ago – you’ve been warned against the excess of rosemary & herby desserts upcoming!

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More rosemary! I just can’t get enough these days in a dessert setting. It is just so good – subtle and not overpowering, but just perfectly there to remind you that you’re eating something out of the ordinary. Besides, it pairs unbelievably well with dark chocolate and coconut.

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Let’s see, what else besides cookies lately?

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Another opera trip on a beautiful evening! Three times in one week, that has to be a record even for me.

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I’m behind on drawing, I need to get back on that boat but I’ve just been too busy or distracted with one thing or another (might have something to do with the large pile of new books I just acquired).

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So! Cookies. Make yourself some rosemary goodness – these come together in just about 10 minutes; the most time consuming thing is chopping the rosemary and even that doesn’t take long. Instant cookie gratification in about 20 minutes – not too shabby! Also, you’ll end up smelling like a heavenly combination of rosemary and chocolate, and I really can’t think of anything better.

Happy baking!

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Rosemary Coconut Chocolate Chunk Cookies

Why stick to standard chocolate chip cookies when you could have rosemary in them?? It’s not overwhelming, just there in the background livening up your cookie experience. Chewy, thick cookies – these are perfect hiking snacks (or anytime snacks, really). Refined sugar free, dairy free, vegan (depends on your chocolate). Probably very easily adaptable to gluten free – a blend or oat flour would work nicely here I think! Yield: somewhere between 16-20, depending on how outrageously large you make them ;) A Wait are Those Cookies original!

  • 1 c whole wheat pastry flour (whole spelt works nicely here too)
  • 1 c almond flour
  • 1 c rolled oats
  • 1/2 c unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp fine sea salt
  • 1 tbsp finely chopped fresh rosemary
  • 1 flax egg (1 tbsp ground flaxseed + 3 tbsp water)*
  • 1/3 coconut oil, melted and cooled
  • 1/3 c maple syrup
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/3 c extra dark chocolate, chopped (I use chunks and then chop them further so that I have a variety of chunk sizes & chocolate shavings)

*these are also great with an egg, if that’s your jam – I’ve made them both ways numerous times!

Preheat the oven to 350, and line a baking sheet or two with parchment paper. I usually shoot for 16 cookies and squash them all onto one baking sheet, because I can be lazy sometimes…

In a small bowl, combine flaxseed and water to make the flax egg, and set aside.  In a large mixing bowl, whisk together whole wheat flour, almond flour, oats, coconut, baking powder & soda, and salt. Chop the rosemary VERY finely and add it into the dry ingredients (large flecks of rosemary are slightly undesirable here). In a smaller bowl, whisk together melted coconut oil, maple syrup, and vanilla. Add wet ingredients, including flax egg, into dry and stir to combine. Stir in chocolate chunks until fully combined. Drop by the large tablespoon onto the prepared cookie sheets – I roll mine so they’re vaguely ball-shaped and then smash them down with the heel of my hand so they flatten a bit.

Bake for 11-12 minutes, until the top is nearly firm when you touch it. Remove from the oven and let cool on the baking sheets for 5ish minutes, until cool enough to handle, then move to a cooling rack to cool completely (these aren’t super fragile, but just be aware when moving them to the cooling rack).

I like these cold out of the fridge, but they’re great at room temp too. You do you! Happy snacking :)

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Dessert straight out of Dagobah

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Green things!

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Because of course I would make myself something ridiculously green for a (belated) birthday dessert!

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Naturally it would also have a tiny Yoda in it, because that seems to have become the birthday dessert tradition around here (reference this cake!) and I am unashamedly nerdy – besides that, this dessert looks like it’s just come out of Dagobah, so it only seems fitting that Yoda would take up residence, right?

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I have to say, I LOVED this (there I go again blowing my own horn regarding my baking, oops sorry). I already love matcha lattes, but this was something else. Earthy, lightly chocolatey, and not one of those desserts that put you into a coma – it’s the perfect post-opera snack and breakfast alongside eggs. Besides, then you can drink your coffee and eat your tea!

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Besides all that, how fun to have something so GREEN for dessert? And then alongside other greens at breakfast (because tea is breakfast food, obvs) – I was having fun with all of the tones of green (art history nerdiness is making an appearance, clearly).

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I mean, this thing is really aggressively green. It is not for the faint of heart, but luckily myself and the one I fed it to loved it, and is obviously fine with green dessert.

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Among other things, I will have been to the opera three times by Saturday night – YAY!  Green dessert + opera is my kind of week!

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So! Like green tea? Do yourself a favor and make a matcha tart! You won’t be sorry, and you can impress your friends with the GREEN-NESS of it all!

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Matcha Custard Tart on Cacao Coconut Almond Crust

Lightly sweet and perfect for those who love their matcha lattes! This is somewhere between a custard and a mousse – the filling is light & earthy, and plays perfectly against the chocolate crust. Grain and gluten free, refined sugar free, dairy free, and paleoish (it’s sweetened with maple, so it depends on your def of paleo). Yield: 1 9″ tart. Serves: 2. Ha! Eat for dessert & breakfast, because tea = breakfast food.

For the crust:

1.5 c almond flour
1/3 c unsweetened cacao powder
1/2 c unsweetened shredded coconut
heaping 1/4 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 tbsp pure maple syrup
3.5 tbsp coconut oil, melted

In a large bowl, stir together almond flour, cacao powder, coconut, sea salt, and baking soda. Add in vanilla, maple, and melted coconut oil and stir until completely combined. The dough will look crumbly, but you’ll be able to press it together with your fingers.

Preheat the oven to 350, and lightly grease a pie plate with coconut oil. Press the crust into the plate and up the sides with a spoon or your fingers, creating a smooth edge (or not, your call!). Poke the bottom with a fork a few times, and bake for 15 minutes.

Increase the oven temp to 375. While the crust is baking, make the custard.

For the matcha coconut milk custard:

3 cups coconut milk
3 large eggs
1/3 c maple syrup
3 tablespoons tapioca starch
2 tablespoons culinary-grade matcha powder
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon pure almond extract
1/8 teaspoon fine sea salt

Heat coconut milk in medium saucepan over medium-low heat until it just barely simmers, about 5 minutes. Meanwhile, whisk together eggs, sugar, cornstarch, matcha powder, vanilla, and salt in medium bowl.

Whisk warm milk into egg mixture in slow, steady stream to temper the eggs. Return egg and milk mixture to saucepan and cook over medium-low heat, stirring constantly and scraping the bottom of the pan, until custard begins to thicken and forms a ridge on tip of spoon when bottom of pan is scraped and spoon is lifted, about 4-6 minutes. Remove crust from the oven and pour in the custard*. Bake until custard has set around edges but jiggles slightly in the center when shaken, 13-15 minutes. Cool to room temperature, about 2 hours. Refrigerate until serving.

Decorate with raspberries, strawberries & coconut (and a tiny Yoda) if you’re so inclined! Serve with ice cream for dessert or eat straight up for breakfast. Refrigerate any leftovers, covered.

*Note – I had slightly more custard than what would fit comfortably in my pie plate. You have options here – bake it in some smaller ramekins until set, or maybe add some tapioca pearls and make pudding? I didn’t do that but now I wish I had! If you do, let me know how it turns out…

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